Vienna, 14 November 2013 Press release

Austria ratifies Convention on combating violence against women

Spindelegger on the occasion of taking over the chairmanship of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe in Strasbourg

Vienna, 14 November 2013 – "We can be proud that Austria is one of the first countries to have ratified the Council of Europe Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence. With our ratification we have contributed to making the Convention enter into force soon", Austrian Vice-Chancellor and Foreign Minister Michael Spindelegger said today when he presented the ratification instrument in Strasbourg. Austria is the sixth state to ratify the Convention which is the first legally binding tool that obliges states to act against gender-specific and domestic violence. It provides comprehensive measures to combat all forms of violence against women and to protect all other victims of domestic violence.

Austrian Foreign Minister Michael Spindelegger presented the ratification deed to Council of Europe Secretary General Thorbjørn Jagland in Strasbourg today in the course of the festive ceremony to mark Austria's taking over the chairmanship of the Council's Committee of Ministers.  Austria's chairmanship is to last until May 2014.

Spindelegger called upon all states that have not yet ratified the Convention to do so soon: “This Convention has established a common international standard of protection for women. I hope the ten ratifications that are needed for it to enter into force will soon be made. Austria is going to use its chairmanship of the Committee of Ministers to promote this highly important agreement in Europe and beyond. We owe it to the many victims of domestic violence to do everything in our power to prevent such human rights violations in future", the Vice-Chancellor concluded.

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